1/7/09

permission marketing, now with a fresh pine scent


rode in a cab today, and while the pine scented air freshener isn't visible in the photo, my nose can confirm it was there.

anyway, we were in the left turn lane behind another car, waiting for pedestrians to clear the crosswalk. suddenly, the cabbie saw an opening between people, did a sharp turn around the car ahead of us, and flew through the line of pedestrians, barely missing women on each side of the car. yet, no one yelled, no one banged the door.

according to my cabbie, he had permission to do that. "see, those people saw it was a cab, and they know a cab has a job to do, so they don't get pissed." and if it was an ordinary car? i asked. "oooo-weee, they'd be swearing, shaking their fists... you just can't be running people over like that."

of course not. unless you have a job to do, like taking me to a meeting.

it's probably not what seth godin had in mind when he said the first rule of permission marketing is that consumers will grant a company permission to communicate only if they know what's in it for them. seeing as how running people over is really just another way to communicate, it seems oddly applicable.

(apologies to the woman in the blue coat crossing at state and lake today. personally, i would've yelled, even though it was a cab.)

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